Ruth Kafensztok, Dr.P.H. is an Assistant Professor with The Department of Public Health Sciences and the Division of EMS, Department of Surgery. She earned her Doctor of Public Health (Dr.P.H.) degree from the University of Illinois at Chicago School of Public Health in 2006.
Dr. Kafensztok has worked in the field of public health for over 15 years, with experience both in public health practice and academic settings. She has worked in applied research at Loyola since 1998 at different capacities, and has been teaching in the Loyola’s Masters of Public Health on-line program since 2010. In addition to teaching, she coordinates injury surveillance related data projects for the Illinois Emergency Medical Services for Children (EMSC) program – a partnership program between Loyola University Medical School and the Illinois Department of Public Health. One of her major responsibilities is to maintain a statewide data system for tracking injuries in Illinois, particularly motor vehicle injuries. The objective of the project is to provide public health practitioners, the traffic safety community and the general public with basic EMS- and injury-related statistics for needs assessment and program planning. Funding support for this project comes from the Illinois Department of Transportation (IDOT) as part of a National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) initiative to improve traffic safety information systems. Through this project, Dr. Kafensztok has acquired extensive knowledge in working with statewide administrative data sources reporting on population-based morbidity and mortality.
Dr. Kafensztok’s experience at Loyola was preceded by two years of work at the Kentucky Department of Public Health, where she coordinated the Surveillance and Evaluation activities for the CDC-funded Breast and Cervical Cancer Prevention and Control Program.
Previous to her academic training and work experience in the United States, Dr. Kafensztok completed her first graduate studies in public health through a federally-funded multidisciplinary residency program at the National School of Public Health, Oswaldo Cruz Foundation, Brazil. Upon completion of her training at the time, she was recruited by the state of Rio de Janeiro Public Health Department to work in the implementation of a new mental health program to provide services to the underserved population of the state.
Dr. Kafensztok’s current areas of interest are injury surveillance and data systems, motor vehicle traffic injuries, utilization of emergency medical services, and the use of administrative data systems (e.g., vital registration, healthcare data, trauma registry, traffic crash report system) for tracking morbidity and mortality when no dedicated surveillance system is available.
MPH Course taught:
- Introduction to Public Health